View Full Version : Video on Christopher Burkett
well, I'm officially entranced. I first found out about his work 2 years back or so, and often find myself staring endless amounts of time at his photographs on his website, However, I've never come across this video, despite it supposedly being 1st viewed in 2002(or released). Well, after viewing, its officially at the top of my "to view again" video list :)!
enjoy, only about 7 minutes or so, but describes his techniques, and shows some shots of the darkroom, and in the field
Thanks for the post, Dan. Any idea what that special enlarging lens was? What camera is he using?
I believe the lens was the APO-EL Nikkor 480mm. 15lbs of "sweetness" ;). I found it interesting that N.G. owns the "only" other 2 in the U.S. I wonder if they're using them, or just have them as prior donations from people/organizations,etc...
Dr Klaus Schmitt
12 have ever been made...there are more than just three in the US btw. NG used them in their labs from what I know and Chris keeps his (and his 210 + 300mm in his safe). This is how one looks like (from my macrolenses site) http://www.macrolenses.de/ml_detail_sl.php?ObjektiveNr=310 - and yes, it is not a bad lens ;) ;)
Here he is with his 480mm: http://www.christopherburkett.com/pages/behindscenes/darkroom9lg.html (mouse over to see a detail!)
Those things are so damn heavy that most enlargers won't even handle the smaller versions without deflecting. A staggering sum of money to spend for one more f-stop of speed than the usual apo-Nikkors.
Dr Klaus Schmitt
It is not the speed of that lens, but the results it achieves. Apo Nikkors and Apo EL-Nikkors are a totally different class of lenses, sorry that you missed that ;)
I'd defy anyone to be able to detect the difference in results with the naked eye between relatively modern versions of the Apo EL, Apo-Nikkor, and El-Nikkor in the
size prints Burkett makes from 8x10 transparencies. And there's no reason for these
long focal lengths other than for 8x10 work. I do it all the time and need a high power
magnifier to detect any miniscule resolution distinction with the latter two categories
of lens even at the extreme corners of a 30X40, for example. There may be some
technical applications where the Apo EL earns its keep, but for simple enlarging it's just
a luxury. What I found out is that in certain cases an extremely high MTF just leads to
picking up things extraneous to the emulsion itself, like a higher risk of pattern on diffusion sheets, Newton rings, miniscule flaws in carrier glass etc. There can be too
much of a good thing, especially in something like Cibachrome which is a high contrast
process to begin with. There are even frequent cases where a very high quality less
expensive lens like an Apo Rodagon is just too much, and I find myself reverting to the
ordinary Rodagon series. I've researched all these things from a practical standpoint,
not just the raw data. Ordinary Apo Nikkors are absolutely superb for color enlarging,
but in some cases are a bit too slow. Ciba is a slow process, particularly when heavily
masked. So if one can hypothetically afford a 300 or longer Apo EL for f/8 and happen to have a very expensive enlarger capable of holding it solidly, why not? But I simply use a 360/5.6 El Nikkor for speed and get virtually the same result. If I need something
even more precise, a 360 Apo Nikkor at f/11 is probably as sharp as anything gets for
this level of magnification. There are a lot more ways to skin a cat than spending ten
grand on an enlarging lens. But if anyone has any Apo El they want to sell me for, say,
five hundred bucks, I'm listening!
an ordinary 360
WOW -- look at the size of those camera cases he makes his wife carry!
the way she talked about the work(prints), I don't think she minds, besides, they weren't all that far from the car in the video...
Looks like he's living the life. Thanks. I've seen his prints and they are beyond measure.
Is there any lab that still can produce Cibachromes? I have a few trannies that I might like to mess around with.
I had the pleasure to work with Christopher years ago when we both were assistants at a Friends of Photography workshop. An excellent person, fine artist and fine craftsman. He certainly has set the standard for what a large color image and print can look like.
Galleries love him. His work sells and when they need another print for a customer, he is very quick to get them one -- very professional.
Powered by vBulletin® Version 4.2.0 Copyright © 2013 vBulletin Solutions, Inc. All rights reserved.